Seeking happiness in tough times? Help someone: 5 questions for Jacqueline Novogratz

I’m in the middle of reading The Blue Sweater: Bridging the Gap between Rich and Poor in an Interconnected World, a memoir by Jacqueline Novogratz. The book traces her journey from her time as a young banker in Africa to her current role as the founder of the Acumen Fund, a new kind of venture fund that invests in market-oriented approaches to solving problems like access to health, water, housing and energy, around the world.

As I thought about her life, I started wondering what is it that makes people like Novogratz able to do what the rest of us merely wish we had the ability to do — make real contact with people in need and actually do something to move them out of poverty. I was especially curious about what Novogratz would say to people living in the developed world who are so worried about their own diminished financial well-being that they find it hard to imagine how they could meaningfully affect the lives of less fortunate people in Africa or Pakistan.

So I had a meeting and a series of email conversations with her to get some answers, and some inspiration. After the jump is a condensed version of our discussion. {Read the rest at Yahoo!}

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